IDeA Agro in a strategic partnership with SPO Zentrum and Jingold for the development of sicilian avocado agricultural greenfield

IDeA Agro in a strategic partnership with SPO Zentrum and Jingold for the development of sicilian avocado agricultural greenfield

Milan, 11th March 2024

IDeA Agro, in a strategic partnership with S.P.O. Zentrum S.r.l. and Jingold S.p.A., has launched a new agricultural greenfield project that envisages the creation of an avocado plant in Sicily, covering an area of approximately 100 hectares in the province of Siracusa.

Agro Avo, the new reality born from the partnership between the three highly synergic and complementary institutions, aims to become a key player in the production and marketing of Sicilian avocados in Italy within a few years.

S.P.O. Zentrum S.r.l., the local partner of the project, is a Sicilian company specialized in the production, packaging, and distribution of fruit and vegetables, with approximately 450 hectares in Sicily, pre-calibration warehouses in Sicily, and logistics and distribution centers in central Italy.

Jingold S.p.A., the commercial partner in the operation, is a global player in kiwi breeding and marketing. It has an extensive network of more than 800 farmers and collaborates with trading partners in South America, Asia, South Africa, and Southern Europe.

The idea of developing an avocado grove in Sicily is linked to the evident market opportunity that has seen a steadily rising consumption trend for several years, both nationally and internationally. From a production perspective, Sicily offers an ideal microclimate for avocado cultivation, allowing for the combination of product quality, high production yields and lower logistics costs with clear benefits in terms of sustainability.

Indeed, the project entails positive impacts from an ESG perspective, as it is structured with the adoption of efficient irrigation practices and sustainable agricultural methods aimed at conserving water resources and preserving soil through the use of state-of-the-art equipment. Simultaneously, the implementation of a short supply chain and the carbon absorption carried out by the trees will play a significant role in reducing atmospheric emissions, thus providing a dual environmental benefit. Furthermore, the plantation will be characterized by full traceability to ensure high product quality and significant support to the local economy through targeted investments with tangible social impact, aiming to create employment opportunities. Therefore, the investment offers an integrated framework to address environmental, social, and economic challenges, by promoting the development and adoption of sustainable agricultural practices, crucial for preserving natural resources and the enhancement of Sicily.

Pier Luigi Rossi, Managing Director of IDeA Agro Fund, commented:

I am pleased to announce the beginning of this ambitious project, which sees us collaborating with renowned partners in the field of production and marketing of Italian fruit and vegetable products such as S.P.O. Zentrum and Jingold. Since its first closing in 2018, the Fund has successfully completed, with this latest operation, nine investments totaling over 1,000 hectares, aimed at strengthening and developing short and integrated agricultural and agro-industrial supply chains. We are extremely proud of the results achieved so far, which confirm the goodness of the initial intuition to invest in agribusiness and to position IDeA Agro as the leading private equity fund specialized in the agricultural sector in Italy”.

Giacomo Rizzo, CEO of S.P.O. Zentrum S.r.l., expressed:

“We are proud to collaborate with IDeA Agro and Jingold in this new development for domestic avocado cultivation in Sicily. This project represents an excellent opportunity, which could bring significant benefits to local agriculture and the regional economy. We believe that investing in Sicilian avocado cultivation could offer S.P.O. Zentrum interesting growth prospects, promoting an even more diversified range of crops within the product portfolio and offering an additional profitable resource for the company”.

Alessandro Fornari, Amministratore Delegato di Jingold S.p.A., ha commentato:

“We are excited about our partnership with IDeA Agro and S.P.O. Zentrum for the development of a new avocado plant. This initiative represents a significant step in our expansion and diversification strategy. Sicily offers an ideal environment for the development of this crop and working with experienced partners in this sector allows us to combine our expertise and resources to maximize the success of this project. We are confident that the plant will have a positive impact both on the region and on our company, and we look forward to offering our contribution in this project”.

IdeA Agro was supported by Areté s.r.l. as business advisor, by the advisory firm Ettore Fieramosca for the market-related part, and by Giovannelli e Associati for the legal side.